New Study Examines Lay Responders’ Ability to Stop Severe Bleeding

There is a new national emphasis on "stop the bleeding."

by Eric Holdeman / May 17, 2019

One of the key missions that the American Red Cross performs is first aid training. See the information below. While CPR has always been one area of emphasis, now stop the bleeding has joined that high-priority training element. 

Unfortunately, with the proliferation of gun violence, there is an urgent need for people to know techniques for stopping the bleeding, from applying pressure, pressure points, new types of bandages and then also applying a tourniquet — which has become much more commonplace. There are a number of commercially available sources for commercial tourniquets. 

See the study link and training announcement from the American Red Cross below:


Results Announced by Red Cross Science Experts During EMS Week

Does the American public feel empowered and equipped to stop life-threatening bleeding? A new study published in Prehospital Emergency Care finds that lay responders are not only willing to apply specialized dressings designed to stop severe bleeding, but that their confidence in doing so significantly increases after a brief education and practice session.

The study, sponsored by the American Red Cross and led by Craig Goolsby, MD, Associate Professor and Vice Chair of Education of the Uniformed Services University’s Department of Military and Emergency Medicine, observed 360 lay responders as they applied hemostatic dressings, which contain ingredients or special designs to promote quick clotting of blood. After a brief education with a standardized video and practice, more than half (56 percent) of the participants could correctly apply hemostatic dressings, and the number of participants willing to get involved and use the dressings more than doubled.

“Everyone should have the knowledge and skills to help in an emergency and save lives,” says Dr. Goolsby, also a member of the Red Cross Scientific Advisory Council. “It’s important to recognize that the immediate actions taken by members of the public before first responders arrive on the scene give victims a better chance at recovering from life-threatening, serious injuries and cardiac emergencies.”

Red Cross training courses — both online and in-person — make it easy for individuals to get the skills they need to prepare for the unexpected, from small accidents to major emergencies such as mass-casualty events.

For example, more than 1,000 people have been trained using the Red Cross First Aid for Severe Bleeding online course since its debut in November 2018. The Red Cross is offering this 30-minute online module, which instructs students on recognizing and controlling severe bleeding, for free in support of Stop the Bleed Month (May), EMS Week (May 19-25) and Stop the Bleed Day (May 23). To take advantage of this promotion, people should go to the First Aid for Severe Bleeding online course page, register and enter coupon code: STBFREE1219.

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